Why do high temperatures make multiple sclerosis symptoms worse? I live in a hot climate and really love being outside, but I can’t much anymore because my MS symptoms get really bad. Why does that happen and is there anything I can take or do so I can en

Complex. If the insulation (myelin) is damaged in nerve fibers, the heat promotes intracellular potassium to leach out, worsening nerve fnctn. A drug such as Ampyra may help stabilize, and since fatigue is an issue, might try Ritalin or nuvigil. Best approach, more potent drug such as gilenya, tysabri, (natalizumab) or even the forthcoming bg-12, and take vit d.
The. The reason why your ms symptoms "act up" in heat has to do with how neurons work. Neurons conduct electrical impulses. If you compare a neuron to a wire, then myelin coating of a neuron is like insulation. A wire stripped of insulation tends to lose electricity along the way - just like a neuron stripped of myelin, as in ms. These losses get worse with increased temperature, but are reversible once you cool off. As best we know, this phenomenon, called uthoff's phenomenon, is not damaging - i.e. You're not having a relapse - although it can be very unpleasant. To minimize it, I advise my patients to hydrate, seek shade and avoid overheating. Other measures include wearing cooling vests and neck coolers, made by several manufacturers. Multiple sclerosis association of america (msaa) can help with paying for these.